The Bridgeport CT Rescue Mission


The following is a blog post I posted at the National Center for Science Education – A Ringer in the Contest, Part 2 | NCSE

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Since much of the commentary on this site is religious, and since most of the commentary is of a bigoted and destructive nature, I thought it appropriate and timely to relay an event my wife and I attended last night.

The event was a fund raiser for the Bridgeport Rescue Mission, a Christian ministry reaching out to the homeless, addicted and hungry in the Bridgeport CT area.

The event was well attended, and I hope very financially successful.

Two speakers filled the evening:

Mike spoke first, was very articulate and transparent as he told his life story beginning in high school – Mike is now 37 years of age. He told of his beginnings with drugs in high school. He told of his marriage at age twenty and his first two children. He told of his graduation to crack cocaine and eventually a heroin addiction. He told of his third and forth child, and his constant lies to his wife and family concerning his destructive live style – destructive not only to him, but to those around him. He told of receiving divorce papers from his wife who could no longer tolerate his destructive life and influence on her for children.

Mike told of his increasing desperation and alienation from life, and his desertion of his family.

Mike told of his finding the Bridgeport Rescue Mission and their year long in-house rehabilitation program. Mike entered the program and stuck with it through the year. Mike told of the life at the mission with daily Bible devotions, prayer and fellowship with others like him who had made bad decisions in life. Mike told of the teaching and mentoring he received in learning how to reenter society as a contributing human being.

Mike concluded his story by recounting his difficulty and painful reconciliation with his wife and family – but reconcile they did … with new purpose in all their lives. The family came on stage and it was a beautiful sight.

The next speaker was Dave Draveky – http://www.cbn.com/tv/14291323….

You may remember Dave from several decades ago – a young major league pitcher approaching this peak of his career, and the fulfillment of his lifelong dreams. Then it all came crashing down as Dave contracted cancer in his pitching arm and lost his arm as well as his baseball career to the dreaded disease of cancer.

Dave recounted some of that trauma, but spent most of his talk in recounting his time yesterday with the men, women and children of the rescue mission. Dave related to much of what the people of the mission were living through … the loss of dreams and the agony of a crushing life.

Dave closed his talk by moving back to Mike’s story and with the picture of that reunited family … fresh on our minds and asked if “Mike and his family was worth sharing some of our wealth and time?” I know what my answer was.

A few numbers of interest:
37.6 % of children
16.2 % of families
18.4 % of individuals
… Live below the poverty line in Bridgeport

12,000 prepared meals each month.
15,000 pantry bag meals each month
20,000 Thanksgiving meals
Emergency shelter services for men and women
Guest house for women and children

New life Discipleship program … a year long in-house addiction recovery program.

As we were leaving the event I caught a glimpse of his family going down the escalator … a husband and wife hand in hand and four happy and energetic children. A beautiful sight. Yes Dave Draveky … lives of value and worth.

Verse:

“Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’

“Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’

Song:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v…

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2 responses to “The Bridgeport CT Rescue Mission

  1. Ronald Vander Griend

    It is awesome to be able to attend events that with value as these. When you get the results from the atheist rescue mission let me know. I know Idaho may seem like a foreign place to some but in Bonners Ferry there was at the same time two programs to help alcoholics and drug users. The one was paid by taxpayers and the other one by a local church. Each had about 50 people in the program. After 90 days one of them had less than 10% success when tested and the other had 100% success. The local police could not believe the results and had them re-tested. Same results. I will let all of you with the brains on this one to figure which was which.

    • Thanks Ron. Ya know, it’s hard work packing up and passing out full Thanksgiving meals, complete with a frozen turkey, for 3,000+ families – and oh yea, passing out some 15,000 winter coats. Maybe this year we will volunteer at the local Atheist Rescue Mission … should be much easier.

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